Kings Remodels, Puts Organics Center Stage


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The new produce department is four times larger.
The new produce department is four times larger.
The Kings supermarket in Verona has just emerged from a near total remodeling, and the result is a feast for the eyes–and stomach.

Walk in the store now and you will be greeted by an expansive cheese case and a produce section that is four times larger than the old department. This produce area is greener in more ways than one: “There are 250 organic items here,” says Judy Spires, CEO of Parsippany-based Kings Food Markets, who was touring the store on its grand re-opening Friday.

250 kinds of cheeses and help choosing the right one.  "You're not alone in the dairy case," says Kings' CEO.
250 kinds of cheeses and help choosing the right one. “You’re not alone in the dairy case,” says Kings’ CEO.

That green focus extends to the meat department, where shelves are now labeled to indicate the availability of not only organic choices, but local and grass-fed too. Spires says that the Verona store is the first in the state to carry non-GMO chicken, that is, chicken raised without genetically modified organisms in its feed.Kings-Olives

Organics and fresh produce not your top priority? The area in front of the deli counter has been revamped to include a large selection of prepared foods, from all-natural soups to sushi, salads, olives and even a mezze bar that can satisfy the urge for falafel and more. Many of the foods appeal to special needs and diets, says Spires, who notes that the store is working on expanding its gluten-free items. The store’s menu of chef-prepared items will change from month to month and if you can’t wait to get home to eat them, you won’t have to: The store has added tables and chairs in front.

An expanded choice of gourmet Italian items.
An expanded choice of gourmet Italian items.

The upscale food store chain began revamping its more than two dozen metro-area stores last year. You’ll find some similarities from location to location–like a large fresh flower section–and some departments that clearly reflect the local emphasis, like the Italian specialties area at the Verona store. It has an olive oil bar, artisanal pastas and a wall full of sauce options to put on top.

The grand reopening celebration extends through this weekend, with lots of gourmet goodies to sample.

Fresh flowers and hostess gifts? Check!
Fresh flowers and hostess gifts? Check!
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Virginia Citrano
Virginia Citrano
Virginia Citrano grew up in Verona. She moved away to write and edit for The Wall Street Journal’s European edition, Institutional Investor, Crain’s New York Business and Since returning to Verona, she has volunteered for school, civic and religious groups, served nine years on the Verona Environmental Commission and is now part of Sustainable Verona. She co-founded MyVeronaNJ in 2009. You can reach Virginia at [email protected].


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